It has been some time since we last reported on PSA Group's plan to re-enter the U.S. When we last checked in, Peugeot was chosen as the brand to be entering the U.S. by 2023 and rumors were swirling about a possible merger between PSA Group and FCA. A lot has changed since then as the two automakers begin to finalize plans for a merger, and the COVID-19 pandemic has no end in sight in the U.S. What does that mean for Peugeot's return to the U.S.?
"My role is to grow the PSA business in North America, growing our mobility capability and preparing for the launch of Peugeot." said Larry Dominique, CEO of PSA North America to Automotive News.
"From our standpoint, we're planning as if [the merger] doesn't exist. We're marching forward as if PSA was going to be there by themselves."
Dominique is right now focused on the present with the top priority being building out a dealer network for both U.S. and Canada before the launch. He explained that the company is planning a two-prong approach, having franchised dealers and online retailing.
"The future success for OEMs is the reduction of distribution costs while ensuring both retail and OEM margin sustainability. This has to be done through strong pricing power, not volume turnover," he said.
Part of this is due to COVID-19 pandemic which has many automakers rethinking how they sell vehicles, something Dominique admits is a big challenge.
"All my competitors are going to be focusing on digital, which means we have to step up our game and deliver an even stronger customer experience when we launch Peugeot in North America. We need to get out of an environment where the retailers are dependent upon just F&I and service to pay their bills."
Another challenge facing Dominique, what models to sell in the U.S. The market has changed a lot since PSA Group announced its intentions to re-enter the U.S. Consumers now are focused on trucks and crossovers.
"I don't have a full-sized truck,. But the C and D segments are what's relevant to us. The C and D segments are high volume and important to North America. That's where we're going to focus initially,"
To us, this hints at the 3008 and 5008 crossovers being some of the first models to be available.
Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
The COVID-19 pandemic has basically brought most of the world to halt. Orders to stay at home, businesses either having workers to their work from home or closing down, and unemployment skyrocketing is causing the economy to crater. There are efforts to try and jump-start the economy such as $1,200 stimulus checks. But an executive at Ford wants to see a return of a "cash for clunkers" like program.
“We think some level of stimulus somewhere on the other side of this would help not only the auto industry and our dealers, which are a huge part of our overall economy, but will help the customers as well,” said Mark LaNeve, Ford’s vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service to Bloomberg.
“Cash for clunkers was very effective at that time. It would be nice to think we could have something equally as effective for 2020 when we get out of this because it was a great program.”
According to LaNeve, internal discussions are taking place at Ford about doing a similar program and there are plans to bring the Government in to these talks.
When asked by Automotive News about this, Ford spokeswoman Rachel McCleery said, "The auto industry is America’s economic engine.We are encouraging Congress to look at a variety of ways to drive job creation, increase demand, support customers and provide long-term stability for the entire auto ecosystem."
A brief refresher on the Cash for Clunkers program. In 2009, the U.S. Government introduced a billion initiative called the Car Allowance Rebate System, which gave a voucher worth between $2,900 and $4,500 to anyone replacing a vehicle newer than 1984. Their old vehicle would be taken away and disposed of. The program was nicknamed Cash for Clunkers.
On the surface, the program was a success. Within first month, all of the funds were exhausted. This prompted the U.S. congress infuse an addition two billion into the program, which would be all gone within 17 days. But begin to look deeper and the results are mixed. In 2012, a study published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics described the program as being a bit of a wash,
"...the effect of the program on auto purchases is almost completely reversed by as early as March 2010 — only seven months after the program ended.”
Other studies have come to the same conclusion.
There's also the question of how many perfectly good used cars were taken off the road due to the program.
Source: Bloomberg via Automotive News (Subscription Required), The Drive, The Truth About Cars
If you get this, you are a critical thinker.
I enter the bedroom.
There are 34 people. You kill 30. How many people are in the bedroom?
If you get it correct your answer will be deleted and I’ll message you to continue the game. Don’t bother playing if you’re not going to continue, party poopers!
I won against Keele Christopher
Happy birthday, Landis! Hope it was a good one. Again, it would have been my dad's birthday ... and Napoleon Bonaparte's. (Both of them were height challenged.)
I'd be going to Mario's on that beachfront boulevard in Galveston to pig out at their Italian buffet.
So I did a thing. I have wanted one of these for years. I managed to find a 2013 Avalanche with just 12,800 miles on the odometer. It’s very well loaded and practically perfect in every way. Very very happy with it!